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Last Updated: Wednesday, 2 March, 2005, 10:07 GMT
Society set to drop historic name
Leeds city centre
The society wants to align itself with "vibrant" Leeds
Leeds & Holbeck building society is to lose a 160-year heritage by dropping the second part of its name.

Managers believe that becoming Leeds Building Society will give the company a "more modern image and wider appeal".

Although officially founded in 1875, the society's roots date back to a group of people in Holbeck, a district just outside the city centre, in 1845.

The name change will help the firm cash in on Leeds' reputation as a "vibrant" city, Chief Executive Ian Ward said.

Members' vote

Leeds & Holbeck, the UK's eighth largest building society, recorded record profits of 42m last year.

Mr Ward said changing the name was part of the society's plans to move even further forward.

"Leeds is recognised nationally as vibrant and successful and we are the only building society with our headquarters in the city.

"Now is the time to make the most of this unique link by simplifying our name, which will make it easier to use and easier to recall.

"A simpler name will be less confusing and it will give us a more modern image with wider appeal," he added.

Holbeck is an industrial district south of the city centre where a group of people first established the Leeds Union Operative Land and Building Society (which later became Leeds and Holbeck) in 1845.

The area is currently undergoing extensive regeneration as the Holbeck Urban Village, which includes the award winning Round Foundry development.

Members will be asked to vote on the proposed name change at the end of March.

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